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Showing posts from May, 2014

Where it all went wrong

Like or not, someday you will be 40.

Living in your 40s isn't as bad as younger folks think. As much as I thought, back when I was a teenager, how ancient I would be when I reached 40 many millenniums into the future, you spend a lot of time in your 40s marveling over how young you still are.

Unfortunately, you spend the other portion moping over how old you are.

The reminders are everywhere. It's not only your own body -- which keeps breaking down in ever surprising new ways and requires constant attention the likes of which you had never dreamed -- but it's everything around you. From the TV shows, to the advertisements, to the clothes to the gadgets to the activities to the music to the attitudes and opinions on every issue available, all of it shouts: YOU'RE NOT YOUNG ANYMORE.

It's almost hurtful. But us folks in our 40s have a way of coping with this.

It's called nostalgia.

Boy do I ever get nostalgic. Half the time this blog is an ode to everything that …

Another winner ... and another contest

I've landed in the middle of another busy work period. I thought I'd be able to send out even more of those 2013 Opening Day cards at the end of this week, but it looks like that won't happen. Maybe it will ... we'll see how sick I get of the man.

I don't like it when this happens. Just once I'd like to have the right side of my desk (the "outgoing packages" section) clear of cards. I always dream of a happy little scenario where I magically send out surprise packages to unsuspecting collectors, like that guy who drops a $1,000 out his window. "What time is it? Oh HO! Time to package some cards for random collector! He'll have no idea!!!!"

Some day.

But meanwhile, I should get to the contest that I announced last week before my job eats that, too.

I was giving away some random items -- '70s cards, oddballs, a few key items from the last couple of years, too -- to say thanks for waiting as I slowly send out packages. The key item, a…

Team MVPs: 1985 Topps

The year 1985 marked my last attempt to complete a set until 1989 came along. And by "attempt" I mean "buy the whole set at the start of the season and never look at it again."

That's what I did with the 1985 Topps set, and that's why I have devoted a blog to the set. It's a way for me to get to know the cards that I ignored so many years ago.

What I am learning is 1985 was a step back in time for Topps. After 1983 and 1984, collectors were led to believe that action was the wave of the future. Virtually all of the large photos in the 1983 and 1984 Topps sets are action-oriented.

But in 1985, while there are still a fair share of action photos, there is also a return to this:


And this:


Some of the best-known cards in the 1985 Topps set -- Dwight Gooden, Eric Davis, Bret Saberhagen -- are photos that looked like they could have appeared in the 1966 Topps set. Standard head-and-shoulders shots.


This is what passed for a card of Steve Carlton in the '…

What I get for not paying attention

Without having the numbers in front of me, I know for a fact that I have less time for you than I did when I first started this blog.

Back then there were -- I don't know -- maybe 150-200 sportscard blogs and I gave each one my undivided attention. I read all the stories, I played all the games, I entered all the contests, I even agonized when I couldn't participate in someone's group break.

Today, there are a good deal number more blogs --- again, I don't have time to give you an exact number -- but that isn't even the reason why I don't pay attention to you as much as I once did.

It's the vast conspiracy of life that's done it. I'm more occupied both in the job and at home. But even if I take everything at individual face value -- blog, job, home, family, other activities -- none of them seem as obviously more demanding of my time than they did more than five years ago.

That's why it's a conspiracy. I don't know what's going on or…

It's about damn time

Dodgers who have thrown no-hitters in my lifetime:



Sandy Koufax, 1965. I was 2 months old.



Bill Singer, 1970. I was preparing to enter kindergarten.



Jerry Reuss, 1980. I was 14. Delivering newspapers.



Fernando Valenzuela, 1990. I was 24. Heard it on the radio on rare Friday off from work.



Kevin Gross, 1992. Age 27. I was toiling away at work. I have very little memory of it.



Ramon Martinez, 1995. Thrown two days before my 30th birthday. I consider it a birthday present.



Hideo Nomo, 1996. Thrown at Coors Field, still one of the most impressive no-hitters in Dodger history in my mind. I was 31.


And then ...

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Until ...

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Really????

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Josh Beckett, 2014.


Hell, it's like I'm a kid again.

We have a winner

This week has pretty much taken every ounce of writing strength I have, but I promised something, so here I am.

I held a contest to celebrate my 400th follower. I randomized all the entrants and then -- all sneaky like -- I didn't announce a winner. Instead, I merely sent the winner the victory package with a letter that said: YOU ARE THE WINNER!

And because things are so hectic, it took me awhile to get the package out. So that means a bunch of folks were waiting around for like a month, staring at the mailbox every day, to see if they would get the golden ticket.

Well, I'm here to say that unless you like the Reds and you run a blog called Red Cardboard, you did not win. He did.

And, like I promised, once the winner revealed their winning package on their blog, I would recognize the winner here.

Congrats to Matt. He's the 400-follower winner.

Here is the randomization that I never showed until now:


There you go. Another contest come and gone that you didn't win.

But…